We all know how important protein is for a healthy, well-balanced diet, but how can you pack more of it into your day? Here are twelve ways to sneak more that we bet you wouldn’t have thought of!
Make it Your Morning Ritual
Coffee fans, you’ll love this one; forego the usual creamers and opt for some protein powder for a no-nonsense early morning boost! Rather than stirring it in, add the hot coffee to a pan and gently whisky in your choice of milk and protein powder. Whisk it up in a blender for a nice, frothy protein shake.
Keep Nuts on Hand
Nuts are an excellent high-protein snack, so keep them nearby for a quick dose of protein. Just be wary - most nuts are also high in fat, so don’t rely on them alone to compensate for your missing protein. I like to divide them up into snack bags when I get home from the store.
Toss In Some Beans
You’d be surprised how well beans meld with so many dishes. Add them to soups, salads, pasta - anything you can think of for fast protein and vitamins. Beans also have the added benefit of being canned, so they’re easy to keep on hand whenever your dish needs extra protein.
Sub in Quinoa for Rice Recipes
Quinoa boasts a good amount of protein and is a perfectly acceptable substitute for rice in many dishes. Quinoa and rice cook very similarly, too, so there’s no real learning curve if you haven’t made it before. Try swapping them out the next time you plan to make some rice.
Try Some Seeds
Seeds are a fantastic topper for so many different dishes. Pop a few on some yogurt or add them as a crunchy element to salads - get creative! Like with nuts, you’ll want to add these sparingly, but they can still help boost your protein count for the day.
Fight the Sweets Urge with Smoothies
Protein shakes themselves aren’t exactly everyone’s ideal dessert. But toss in some fresh fruit and yogurt, blend, and you’ve got a refreshing, slightly sweet smoothie that adds protein to your day and satisfies your sweet tooth - at least for a little while.
Sneak Some Into Pancakes
Protein powders hide well in your pancakes! Mix it into the batter before you make them, and enjoy some added morning energy. Plus, the extra protein will help counteract the potential sugar crash you might experience from going a bit heavy on the syrup.
Just Add Milk
Milk is high in protein, so adding it to your coffee or tea throughout the day is a simple way to increase your numbers. If you’re concerned about calories, stick with skim or milk with lower fat content. You can also use non dairy milks like almond milk.
Tofu is extremely versatile, and it’s not just for vegetarians! You can even use silken tofu, creamy and super soft tofu, in smoothies for a rich, decadent consistency. And tofu is well-loved for its high protein count, so it’s also a great way to switch up the same old chicken breast dinners.
Use Egg Whites
Sneaking egg whites into things like oatmeal in the morning is a healthy way to get extra protein. Just make sure you cook whatever you’re eating thoroughly; a raw egg is not the flex you think it is! I like to keep liquid egg whites on hand to add to my morning oatmeal.
Snack on String Cheese
This snack leans hard on this list's “delicious” aspect, but yes - cheese is a phenomenal way to get your daily protein. And string cheese is mobile, so you can take your protein on the go.
Bring In Some Superfoods
Superfoods like spirulina or nutritional yeast are touted as health foods because they’re full of essential vitamins and minerals. But they’re also higher in protein than you’d think! Spirulina is an excellent mix-in for smoothies, while nutritional yeast is perfect for savory applications like pasta or dips.
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